Frozen regulations mean that all 2021 Formula 1 cars will be fairly similar to their 2020 predecessors, so most new car launches this season will be underwhelming. With no real chance at a completely new look or radical change in performance, the biggest change available to most teams is a new livery. Scuderia AlphaTauri, Red Bull's other team, has chosen to change just that.
Earlier today, it revealed the AT02, an evolution of the company's race-winning AT01 chassis. While the car itself is not much of a game-changer, the team's new livery has worked its navy-and-white color scheme into something far more interesting than what the program ran in its first season. While last year's car was split across the cockpit, with everything behind the sidepods a dark blue and everything in front white, the new car is split where the beltline would be on a roadgoing car, with a simple white on the bottom and a flat blue over the majority of the car.
The texture and color are striking, but the most unique change are the white wheels. While most F1 teams opt for simple shades of silver and black, AlphaTauri has opted for the brightest possible option, running white wheels that would look more at home on a rally car than an open wheel racer.
The car is not mechanically identical to the AT01 that ran last season. Team technical director Jody Eggington says the program has chosen to use their two available offseason updates at the front of the car, where the team is debuting a new suspension and a new nose.
Yuki Tsunoda will join 2020 Monza winner Pierre Gasly at Scuderia AlphaTauri this season, replacing the outgoing Daniil Kvyat. The team will expect to compete for points finishes every weekend and podiums on rare occasions, but, after last season, another win may not be out of the question.